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SBD Global/December 11, 2013/Facilities

Barcelona To Decide In January Whether To Remodel Camp Nou Or Build New Stadium

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Barcelona weighs Camp Nou remodel against building new stadium.
Barcelona will "make a decision in January" on whether to expand the club's Camp Nou stadium or "move to a new location," according to the BBC. The Spanish club wants to "increase the capacity of Europe's largest football stadium from 99,354 to 105,000, and build a roof to cover the ground." Barcelona's board of directors will "vote on the plan early in the new year." Barcelona spokesperson Toni Freixa said, "We've made advances, we have all the information and we're in a position to make a decision" (BBC, 12/10). The PA reported Freixa said on Barcelona's official website that the team had two choices: "The construction of a new stadium on the land on Diagonal, property which belongs to the University of Barcelona, or a profound remodelling project that would constitute a new stadium keeping the current structure of the Camp Nou." Despite the "sizeable financial outlay that would be involved, Freixa insisted any project would not harm the club." Freixa: "It needs to be viable from a technical perspective, urbanist and economic. We would never submit a project that would endanger the sustainability of the club" (PA, 12/10).

HOW BIG? In London, Pete Jenson reported "the new Camp Nou will be third in terms of capacity" behind two stadia: "the Rungrado May Day stadium in North Korea, which holds 150,000, and the Saltlake Stadium" in Calcutta, which holds 120,000 (DAILY MAIL, 12/9). The EFE reported Barcelona Economic VP Javier Faus said that remodeling Camp Nou would require an investment of €300M ($413M), while building a new stadium would cost more than €600M ($826M). Faus explained that a "small-scale renovation has been ruled out, and warned that a remodeling of the stadium is very complex and would be the most inconvenient for members," as this would force Camp Nou to lose 12,000 seats at the "most critical moment" (EFE, 12/10).
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